By Roland Sebestyén
The Scottish National Party (SNP) would decriminalise drugs for personal use in an independent Scotland.
According to the Daily Record, a report called for a thorough drugs policy reform as Scotland’s drug death figures are constantly growing and the country – independent or not – should take a “bold approach based on harm reduction and recovery.”
In a report published by the Social Justice and Fairness Commission, the authors recommend that “safe consumption rooms” should be made available for drug users to use their products under professional surveillance and medical help.
This is something that could be a reality before a potential second referendum to be held about Scotland’s future in the UK.
Also, the Social Justice and Fairness Commission, which was established by Nicola Sturgeon in 2019 and has been led by MSPs Shona Robison and Neil Gray, proposed that an independent Scottish government should look into decriminalisation by holding talks with the public on the matter.
They said: “We would therefore propose the utilisation of a Citizens’ Assembly to look at issues such as decriminalisation for personal use, which we could advance with independence in our efforts to tackle addiction.”
The Scottish Sun reports that the SNP’s political opponents aren’t too happy about the proposals that include radical changes in the way Scotland would handle poverty, immigration, tax policy, workers’ rights and pensions.
Scottish Conservative shadow social justice secretary Miles Briggs said the report is only a “wish-list” from the SNP.
He said: “This wish-list from the SNP is not remotely credible. Their election manifesto wasn’t costed and this blueprint for their vision of a future Scotland isn’t either.
“It is based on fantasy economics. They simply don’t accept the reality that independence would already cost Scottish families thousands of pounds before their plans to spend even more public money.
“This report also talks up a raft of policies that the SNP have the powers at their disposal right now to tackle. We’ve heard it all before from SNP ministers on scrapping or reforming council tax during their 14 years in office.
“It was also Nicola Sturgeon who took her eye off the ball in relation to drug deaths and slashed funding for vital rehabilitation services. They don’t need drug laws to be devolved to fix that right now.
“The Scottish public deserve the SNP’s focus to be on our recovery from Covid, rather than talking up their plans for an independent Scotland.”
Also, Labour finance spokesman Daniel Johnson said: “Labour agrees with much of this report and will work with the SNP where there is agreement.
“We do need to tackle drug deaths. We do need a humane asylum policy. And we do need fair work principles. But we also need honesty from the SNP.